Need to Know

USDA Releases Food Label Guidelines Aimed at Reducing Food Waste

To clear up confusion, the USDA wants packages to carry “best if used by” dates. It’s asking egg, meat and dairy manufacturers to use the new system.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released food labeling guidelines aimed at reducing the amount of good food that gets thrown out.

Many consumers get confused by “best by”, “use by” or “sell by” dates, which are not standardized across packages.

To clear up confusion, the USDA wants packages to carry “best if used by” dates. It’s asking egg, meat and dairy manufacturers to use the new system.

CBSNews.com has more:

The Grocery Manufacturers Association would not say if they plan to adopt the label, but did tell CBS News that “the food and consumer products industry is committed to providing consumers with the information they need to make informed decisions regarding the safety and quality of the products they purchase and consume.”

Stashwick said current labels and the new “best if used by” stamp are not an expiration date.

“Typically those dates are just a manufacturers best guess on when food will be at its peak quality, they are really not an indicator about the safety of the food,” she said.

Read the full story here.

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